D2 Augusta University (GA) head men’s basketball coach Dip Metress has been suspended for six weeks without pay, and assistant coach O’Neal Armstrong has been fired, according to a report from WJBF. The suspension and firing stem from Armstrong taking an online test for a player this past March. Metress will miss the first five games of the season as a part of his suspension.
The report also states that Metress “inappropriately assisted a student athlete with academic work to the point of actually completing the student athlete’s work because the student athlete was incapable of completing the work. Metress was also found guilty of applying tacit coercion to his former assistant coach to ensure he did ‘whatever necessary’ to assist the student athlete to complete and pass his academic work.”
According to the report, other penalties include:
• Nine wins from the 2020-21 basketball season will be vacated.
• 10 scholarships allowed by the NCAA will be reduced to 9 beginning fall 2022.
• No Augusta University Presidential Exception admissions will be granted for men’s basketball beginning fall 2022.
• Metress will have an official letter of reprimand placed in his employment file.
Metress has been the head coach at Augusta for the past eighteen seasons, where he has gone 368-143 (.720). He was tabbed as the Peach Belt Conference Coach of the Year in 2009-10 and 2018-19. Before coming to AU, Metress served as the head coach at D2 Belmont Abbey (1996-2004), where he went 134-93 (.590).
O’Neal, a former player at AU, had been on the staff since 2019.
The complete report, including the documents obtained by WJBF in regards to the AU and NCAA investigations through an Open Records Request can be found HERE.